Samuel A. Jinapor — Minister of Lands and Natural Resources
Samuel A. Jinapor — Minister of Lands and Natural Resources

Parliament ratifies Ghana Bauxite Company’s mining lease

Parliament has unanimously ratified the Mining Lease granted by the government to Ghana Bauxite Company to mine bauxite at Awaso in the Bibiani Anhwiaso Bekwai Municipality in the Western North Region. 


This was after a joint Parliamentary Committee of Mines and Energy and Lands and Forestry presented its report to the House yesterday (Wednesday, 26th June, 2024).

The Ghana Bauxite Company, which has been in existence for over 80 years, is the only bauxite mining company in the country. The Awaso bauxite mine is an integral part of the government’s policy to build an integrated aluminium industry in the country.

The Ghana Integrated Aluminium Development Corporation (GIADEC), which was established to promote and develop integrated aluminium industry in the country, has identified the mine as one of its four projects to build an integrated industry.

As part of its strategy, GIADEC is working with strategic investors to expand the mine and build a refinery as a solution to refining bauxite mined in the area. The company has gone through different phases since it started operation in the 1940s.

Originally owned by the British Aluminium Company Ltd, the government acquired 55 per cent stake in the company in 1972, under the Mining Operations (Government Participation) Decree, 1972 (NRCD 132), passed pursuant to the National Redemption Council’s policy of “taking over the commanding heights of the economy.”

However, the company faced several challenges after the acquisition, with production decreasing from 407,000 tonnes in 1974 to 64,000 tonnes in 1982.


The government, therefore, decided to divest its interest in the company. In 1997, Alcan, a Canadian company, acquired 80 per cent stake in the company, with the government holding the remaining 20 per cent.

A British-Australian multinational, Rio Tinto, acquired Alcan’s interest in the company before selling same to the Bosai Minerals Group in 2010.

In 2022, however, Ofori-Poku Company Limited (OPCL), a wholly owned Ghanaian company, acquired the 80 per cent stake held by Bosai, making the company, for the first time in its 80-year history, a wholly owned Ghanaian company.

New lease

OPCL was incorporated in 1990 and has enormous experience in the mining industry, having operated as a leading supplier of various mine services, including haulage, transport and provision of climate change solutions.

Following the expiration of its mining lease, the company was granted a new lease on May 3, this year, covering the Kanayerebo, Subri, Nchiniso, Afumba and Bokahirri Hills in Awaso.

Earlier this month, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel A. Jinapor, laid the mining lease in Parliament for ratification in accordance with Article 268(1) of the 1992 Constitution, and the Speaker referred it to the Joint Committee of Mines and Energy and Lands and Forestry.  


Presenting the report of the Joint Committee to Parliament, the Chairman of the Mines and Energy Committee, Samuel Atta Akyea, said the request by the minister for the mining lease to be ratified was in accordance with the constitutional provision which ensured parliamentary oversight over the management and utilisation of the natural resources of the country.

He said the mining lease was consistent with the Constitution and relevant laws of the country, and ratifying it would bring tremendous benefits to the government and promote the socio-economic development of the area.

Mr Atta Akyea said the committee was, also, satisfied that the company had the financial and technical capacities to execute its obligations under the lease, and, therefore, recommended the lease for ratification.

Members of the House praised the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources for bringing the lease to the House for ratification. They noted that the constitutional provision which required parliamentary ratification of mining leases had been violated by successive governments since 1992.

Members also congratulated the minister and the government for securing a Ghanaian investor to invest in the strategic mine, which made the mine wholly owned by Ghanaians.

Members, again, lauded the government for incorporating plans to build a refinery into the agreement to ensure value addition to the minerals mined. 
They expressed optimism that the measures would inure to the benefit of Ghanaians.

Indigenising mining industry

For his part, Mr Jinapor thanked the House and the members of the joint committee for their diligence and for unanimously supporting the motion for the ratification of the mining lease.


He said the government was fully committed to indigenising the mining industry, and was working with all stakeholders to ensure that Ghanaians participated fully across the full value chain of the mining industry.   

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